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can anyone identify this snake?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by yongxingfreesty, Aug 11, 2007.

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  1. yongxingfreesty

    yongxingfreesty Member

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    found this snake in my backyard, prob ate my fish or frogs.
    killed it with a shovel to the head. can anyone tell me more about this snake?
    if wrong section, sorry.

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    Last edited: Aug 11, 2007
  2. koja48

    koja48 member

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    Unfortunately, a very dead, perfectly harmless, & formerly very beneficial garter snake.
     
  3. yongxingfreesty

    yongxingfreesty Member

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    awww CRAP! now i feel so bad, it scared the heck out of me when I saw it.
     
  4. Novus Collectus

    Novus Collectus Member

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    Yeah, it's a garter snake, but don't fret, there are probably a few more where that one came from coming soon.
     
  5. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    Only four poisonous snakes in Texas, and what you'd see depends on location.

    Most folks know what rattlers look like; they're pretty much in all parts of the state. Moccasins, of which the cottonmouth is the only poisonous one, are rare if you're not near a pond or stream.

    Copperheads? I know they're around Cuero in DeWitt County; never saw one around Austin, and certainly not out here in the desert.

    The coral snake is pretty uncommon. They move slowly. Sluggish. Small. Half to three-quarter inch diameter; not often over 18" or so in length. They don't really strike, as does a rattler or copperhead. Black bands, and red and yellow bands adjacent. Distinguished from one of the harmless king snakes by the doggerel, "Red and yellow, kill a fellow; red and black, friend of Jack."

    Everything else? Harmless.
     
  6. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    Yep,

    That was a perfectly harmless little garter snake. Poor little thing. And she probably had a had a nice little family back in her home. Now they will be orphaned and raised by foster parent snakes.

    Some or most will probably have trouble relating with other snakes in snake school and most will probably be institutionalized before they become adults.

    ;);)


    Many people have an automatic reaction to a snake any snake and that is to go into kill mode. Most snakes are very beneficial. And the vast majority are harmless.

    However you should never approach or attempt to touch or pick up a snake that you are not familiar with.
     
  7. yhtomit

    yhtomit Member

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    From the look of your kill, I bet you could erase doubt about what it ate with the aid of a filet knife :)

    Snakes, even "harmless" ones, sure give me the willies -- not as bad a case as they give my sister, but still.They're like cockroaches; I know that some people can somehow manage to not be bothered, but as for us normals, no way :)

    (However, as a kid I once helped to cruelly kill a snake -- almost certainly a completely harmless one, and I have always felt bad about that since, so I'd be leery of killing one unless I knew it to be harmful.)

    timothy
     
  8. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    I've had garter snakes make a home in my garden and I even had a pet one for a few days as a kid until my mom made me set it free. :D . I remember getting the bejesus scared out of me by a hog nose in a wood pile once. UGLY big headed creatures, but totally harmless. The only things we have that are bad news are moccasins, rattlers, and copper heads and they're easy to identify. I have seen coral snakes, too. They have a very potent poison, but not much of a delivery system for it. Still, I shoo 'em away, rather not test out their delivery systems, LOL. They're not aggressive snakes. Copper heads aren't aggressive nor that potent, either. The two snakes that really get me moving are cotton mouths (hate those ugly, nasty things and they can be aggressive) and rattlers just because they can be deadly. I'll normally shoot the moccasins just because, will side step a rattler and leave it alone in the field if I can unless it's a big one and I wanna eat it. :D
     
  9. hexidismal

    hexidismal Member

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    Since this thread has already delivered it's useful info.. just for fun I'd like to take this thread opportunity to relate to you all a little personal history with snakes. They hate me, plain and simple. I've never really had anything against them.. but man o man, do they hate me. The first incident I can remember was in grade school, maybe 4th or 5 th grade. My school would take it's students on a yearly trip to a nearby old unused reservoir which was used for picnics and swimming and the like. I was, as far as I know, the only kid who had to be brought in from the lake and taken to the hospital (just to make sure) from REPEATED watersnake bites. Totally harmless, and normally scared of people. Now, skip ahead some years, and I knew a girl who kept constrictor type snakes. One day one of her snakes was passed around from person to person, totally placid.. and yep, you guessed it, bit me for no reason when it got to me. Again skip ahead. In high school science class, a teacher had brought in a tiny little baby garter snake. It didn't even have any teeth to speak of, but when passed around it repeatedly tried to bite my finger. Just basically smacked its open mouth against me. And I was the only one that happened to in the group. So, it's been about 13 years since then, and I've refused to hold any pet snakes since then. BUT.. friends who do have pet snakes are always saying "he doesn't normally do this" when I'm around, because the snakes tend to get cagey and annoyed easily. So.. there you have it.. unexplained to this day, snakes hate me. :uhoh:
     
  10. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    hexi,

    You must produce some of those danger pheromones that snakes hate so much!

    I once had a HUGE green mamba slither by me as I was seated on a rock pile. Apparently I was sitting on his house.

    I held perfectly still and he just slithered by about two inches from my feet all 8 or 10 feet of him.

    I'm sure glad that I don't have the same effect on snakes that you do! That would have been bad.:uhoh:
     
  11. TehK1w1

    TehK1w1 Member

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    Just for the heck of it...
    That is an Eastern Garter Snake (Thamnophis sirtalis sirtalis). It is indeed harmless, and is one of the most common snakes in your area(where I also happen to be located) It's a rather pretty animal and it's a pity you killed it, but that's better than getting bitten by a water moccasin. It is found in basically the entire eastern half of the US, and can be found in fields, forests, and back yards :uhoh:

    I'm a biology major, can you tell? :rolleyes:

    Sources available on request. :D
     
  12. tkendrick

    tkendrick Member

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    When I was a kid, about 13 or so, my old man decided that my character would be better developed if I worked in the summer instead of hanging around the community pool with my pals.

    One afternoon, I stepped down of the JD 4020 to take a P, and felt something slapping my leg. Turned out I had parked on a big Bull Snake and he was thrashing around pretty good.

    Funny thing......I don't REMEMBER climbing on top of the cab!
     
  13. Hikingman

    Hikingman Member

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    That Garter snake is looking hungry! Well, he probably caught his next meal soon afterward. It is likely a "Thamnophis sirtalis annectens" or Texas Garter Snake for short.
     
  14. TehK1w1

    TehK1w1 Member

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    Well, I was checking out Hikingman's suggestion and I have come up with another idea. I think that this may not be a Garter snake, but a Western Ribbon snake (Thamnophis proximus proximus). It is very similar in appearance, but has the orange stripe this snake is showing.
     
  15. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Well, it's just a garter snake to me, and yeah, I was a biology type, fisheries management. :D Didn't take any herpetology. Most did, but I was busy with chemistry courses for electives, wanted to be one of the few to get a job when I got out.
     
  16. MSarge

    MSarge Member

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    Snakes I can handle. Spiders are another story. I'm not responsible for what I do if a spider gets on me.
     
  17. tkendrick

    tkendrick Member

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    Spiders are another story. I'm not responsible for what I do if a spider gets on me.
    Me too. And at least once or twice a year, I get a tarantula the size of a sanitation truck in my back yard.:eek:
     
  18. koja48

    koja48 member

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    Spiders are another story

    Ditto . . . with all the Black Widows in this area, when I encounter one, it's history.
     
  19. pax

    pax Member

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    Art ~

    I learned a variant of that.

    "Red on yellow, kill a fellow.
    Red on black, poisons lack."

    pax
     
  20. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Red and black, venom lack is the official south Texas version. :D

    Wooded areas in the eastern half of Texas have copperheads. We don't have many down here on the middle coast where my property is at and the big tree is scrub oak or mesquite or huisache, but just a little inland in the post oak/live oak, they abound. I grew up south of Houston in Brazoria County, lots of 'em back in the woods there. Their poison isn't that bad, never heard of anyone being killed by one, but getting bit by one ain't exactly fun from what I hear and is to be avoided. Not as many rattlers where I grew up and they're everywhere you step down here. I think I'd trade the rattlers for copperheads. Plenty of moccasins both areas as both are wet.

    As I understand it, there's only one moccasin, well, cottonmouth anyway. All those yellow/black and different versions of water snakes that are non-poisonous are of a different genus, Natrix. They get big, are nasty looking, can infest a pond or tank, and can be very aggressive, but have no venom. They're mean son of a guns, though, will come after you upon slightest provocation and test how confident you are in your snake identification, ROFL! Been there, done that. Lots of the Natrix are blotchy colored or patterned and are easily identifiable as not being a moccasin. However, there's about a bazillion species and if they're coming at you such that you can't see the head well enough to identify it as a pit viper, I just shoot first and ask questions later. ROFL!

    http://www.hlasek.com/natrix_natrix_4197.html
     
  21. TehK1w1

    TehK1w1 Member

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    That's my thought, if it comes after me I'm going to shoot it, if not I will ignore it if harmless, relocate it if poisonous and in a location where it could cause harm. Catching copperheads is not an activity for the faint of heart :p My count so far is 5 caught and no bites :D
     
  22. p35

    p35 Member

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    Garter snakes like that are common around here and harmless. I don't mess with them because they tend to poop all over when picked up, especially on whoever is doing the pickupping.
     
  23. Jimmy Newman

    Jimmy Newman Member

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    I would just like to add one thing to the discussion: While "red touch yellow" works in North America, it does not in Central and South America where there are some coral snakes where red and yellow bands do not touch. It may also not work on other continents not mentioned :).

    I've seen plenty of rattlesnakes, a few water moccasins, a couple of copperheads, and no coral snakes. I have a friend who is a major snake lover and he taught me a fair bit about them and how to tell the different types apart. I mostly live and let live unless they're right around a house.

    I did have a speckled king snake for a pet for a number of years, they make pretty easy to take care of pets except for the biweekly or monthly cage cleaning, which is kind of gross.
     
  24. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    I've seen several coral snakes in the woods around Brazoria/Freeport, Texas area, live oak and heavy undergrowth. There're small and while highly poisonous, I never worried a lot about 'em because they're rather docile and their venom delivery system is such that they're really not much of a threat if you just leave 'em alone. I killed one that was on my wood pile at my home on the river south of Brazoria once, only one I ever whacked and that was just because I didn't want it hiding in there when I went for wood. Copper heads were numerous in that area.
     
  25. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

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    I encountered a garter snake in my side yard and after
    I got over my snake-o-phobia panic attack and ID'd it as
    nonpoisonous, it went its way and I went mine. Some
    folks report an allergic reaction to a garter snake bite,
    but they do not have venom.

    Usually, if I see a snake and can avoid it, it's live and
    let live. I have killed what appeared to be a copperhead
    in my mother-in-law's bathroom; when she had a black
    snake in the kitchen, I caught it alive and carried it about
    a quarter mile in the woods and released it.

    My father told me early, though, if I killed everything that
    was ugly or looked dangerous, I would be very very busy
    and it would be a underpopulated world. Live and let
    live; kill only if the alternative is dieing yourself. Learn
    from mistakes.

    Heck, I once killed a copperhead at my uncle's barn
    and he was mad: was I going to hang around and
    eat the mice for him? He could avoid the snake, the
    mice were the problem.
     
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